Dear CWR Friends:

In the interest of keeping you informed, the CWR Board of Directors shares highlights of our monthly meetings. The Communicators for Women Religious Board of Directors met in a videoconference on Tuesday, Nov. 17, 2015.

Four members who will begin Board service in January were also in attendance as observers: Rochelle Cassella, Dave Eck, Sarah Jenkins and Jean Merry.

Here are the highlights of that meeting:

The meeting opened with a prayer shared by Chair Eileen Dickerson.

October Board meeting minutes were approved, with minor corrections.

Executive Team — Board Chair Eileen Dickerson reported:

  • The Conrad Hilton Foundation approved the use of residual funds from the Hilton grant for consulting services rendered by the CWR Coordinator.
  • A survey of CWR members’ needs for/interest in education and/or skills training will be sent in the beginning of the new year, as part of an enhanced member services initiative.
  • Board members will complete Board service self-evaluations by the end of the year. The evaluations will be reviewed at the January in-person meeting in Indianapolis, Indiana.
  • Representatives from FADICA (Foundations and Donors Interested in Catholic Activities) and Faith in Public Life have contacted CWR to explore possible opportunities for collaboration. FADICA is a nonprofit member association, based in Washington, D.C., that works to strengthen and promote Catholic philanthropy. Faith in Public Life is a strategy center for the faith community advancing faith in the public square as a powerful force for justice, compassion and the common good. Exploring and developing collaborative opportunities with other organizations will be one of the strategic plan charges assigned to the future Executive Director. FADICA requested photos of Catholic sisters working in their ministries. The request was disseminated on the CWR listserv and FADICA was pleased with the good response from CWR members.

CWR Treasurer and Finance Committee Chair Sister Beth Kress, PBVM said that the Finance Committee is in the process of working with the various CWR committees on the 2016 budget and will present a draft of that budget to the Board in December.

The Hilton Grant Committee is waiting for approval of CWR’s $1.5 million grant application. Chair Julie Gilberto-Brady and CWR Coordinator Susan Oxley attended a gathering of Conrad Hilton Foundation grantees. The Foundation presented an overview of its work to support and promote Catholic sisters. The primary purposes of the gathering were networking, relationship building and potential for collaboration. Julie and Susan reported that they received encouragement from the Hilton representatives.

Julie said that a portion of the residual funds from the original grant can be used to begin the process of hiring an Executive Director through the engagement of an executive recruiting agency.

Coordinator Susan Oxley presented a list of possible sites for the 2017 CWR conference for the Board’s review.

Conference 2015 Chair Stephanie Hall said that the conference committee felt the Albuquerque event provided a good balance of the spiritual and the practical for members.

Conference 2016 Chair Kathy Gatliff and her committee are working diligently on the planning for the annual conference, which will be held in Indianapolis.

The Marketing Committee, co-chaired by Jennifer Kaminski, is working on ideas for presentation materials/equipment for CWR presence at other organizational conferences. The committee suggested that a description of the various CWR committees, the work those committees do and a list of committee members be added to the new/non-member conference packets. The committee is following up with non-members who attended the 2015 conference, inviting them to join CWR.

Development Committee Chair Kate Martin volunteered to offer the prayer for the December Board videoconference.

Next CWR Board videoconference will take place on Dec. 10, 2015.

We wish you a Happy Thanksgiving!

CWR Board of Directors
Eileen Dickerson, Chair
Sister Angela Szczawinska, CSFN, Vice Chair
Sister Beth Kress, PBVM, Treasurer
Sister Paulette Gardner, SSA
Kathy Gatliff
Julie Gilberto-Brady
Stephanie Hall
Jennifer Kaminski
Stephanie Manseau
Kate Martin
Paula Staisiunas Schultz
Annemarie Sanders, IHM, LCWR Liaison
Carol Shuck Scheiber, NRVC Liaison

“Please remember that the benefits you receive as a member of CWR are made possible by an ALL VOLUNTEER Board and committees. CWR can thrive and grow as long as our members volunteer their gifts through Board and committee service.”